He lied about the affair, and custody issues. Didn't report all of his income in child support calculations. He told me that if I tried to get his retirement and other assets that he would make things very difficult for me. He threatened me repeatedly that it would get very ugly if I didn't sign them, and being the wife for over 10 yrs of a very verball abusive, controlling alcoholic I believed him.
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I offer the following remarks trusting that you will abide by the honor system.
Also, I must mention that it seems I have inadvertently cited some authority from the wrong jurisdiction (California as opposed to Oklahoma). I offer my sincere apologies for any confusion. The governing principles, however, are similar in that fraud is a recognized ground for seeking to set aside a divorce judgment. Specifically, Oklahoma Statutes
§ 43-122: "Effect of divorce. A divorce granted at the instance of one party shall operate as a dissolution of the marriage contract as to both, and shall be a bar to any claim of either party in or to the property of the other, except in cases where actual fraud shall have been committed by or on behalf of the successful party." [emphasis added in italics]. In terms of time limits, Oklahoma Statutes § 43-123: "An appeal from a judgment granting or denying a divorce shall be made in the same manner as in any other civil case." This takes us to Oklahoma Statutes § 12-1031: "The district court shall have power to vacate or modify its own judgments or orders within the times prescribed hereafter:***4. For fraud, practiced by the successful party, in obtaining a judgment or order;" as well as Oklahoma Statutes § 12-651: "New trial - Definition - Causes for.
A new trial is a reexamination in the same court, of an issue of fact or of law or both, after a verdict by a jury, the approval of the report of a referee, or a decision by the court. The former verdict, report, or decision shall be vacated, and a new trial granted, on the application of the party aggrieved, for any of the following causes, affecting materially the substantial rights of the party: 1. Irregularity in the proceedings of the court, jury, referee, or prevailing party, or any order of the court or referee, or abuse of discretion, by which the party was prevented from having a fair trial; 2. Misconduct of the jury or a prevailing party; 3. Accident or surprise, which ordinary prudence could not have guarded against;
Given the complexities of the matter and the amount of time that has elapsed, the only prudent course of action is to share your concerns with your local criminal law enforcement authorities as well as a private attorney without delay.
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